Thursday, March 29, 2007

Soccer





Porter has been playing Spring Soccer for the past month. Last year we played with YMCA, and this year we tried a soccer club. It's been a much better experience! It didn't cost that much more, and Porter is getting so much more out of it!

His coach is a kindergarten PE teacher, and she has a son on the team. We have a practice and a game once a week. In practice they do little drills and play little games to help the kids develop some skills with the ball. The games are set up so that only three kids play against three other kids at a time, with no goalie. The aggressive kids play against aggressive kids and less-aggressive or less-competitive kids play against their like counterparts as well.

The only problem is, I don't think Porter is cut out for soccer... Maybe I need to give him more time... but it seems to me that the kids on his team either have it, or they don't. Instead of running to the ball, Porter will rush where the ball is headed, and he'll only go near it if it's to play defense... In other words, to kick it away from the goal. He's kept the other team from scoring quite a bit, and he does a little celebration dance every time he kicks the ball, it's really pretty cute! But we have to yell at him to remind him to focus back into the game after a kick. He is a born goalie, that's the position he always wanted to play last year. And he's actually really good at it, but since they don't officially have a goalie at this age group in this league, he doesn't have a niche.

Offensively jumping into the middle of the pack and kicking the ball down the field isn't his thing. Of course I don't tell him what I think, I encourage him, and if he starts to drag, I remind him he has to finish the season. Maybe he would get some fancier foot work skills if Doug or I took him out every day to practice... But he's already talking about what sport he wants to do next... t-ball, gymnastics or karate... Doug is vetoing karate, lest Porter' s sister become the main practice target.

I really think kids just need time to be kids. And from personal experience, I think being involved in too many activities, means that you don't do anything well. So I am planning on letting my kids do one sport and one musical instrument at a time.

In the meantime, we're enjoying getting out in the beautiful weather to watch practice and games, Sophia picks flowers and begs me for her own pink soccer ball. She saw a pink one when we bought Porter his... I bought Sophia a pink ball that is the same size, but she's too savvy for me, and knows it's not a real soccer ball! I also think sports, any sports are good for kids, regardless of skill... It gets them moving, helps them make new friends, and learn good sportsmanship, and as it builds confidence.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Diabetes Update

I don't feel like going to sleep yet, can you tell??? Three posts in a row!

I've been to the doctor twice since my bad news. The first was a diabetic counseling, and the second was for a check-up. I was greeted today with the news that because of my "condition", I will have to go in every week from now until the end of my pregnancy. The office also just instituted a "no-kid" policy... So now I'll be finding someone to watch my kids even more frequently! Kind of frustrating, and a little unnecessary, I think... I am 30 weeks along. I will also have frequent non-stress tests and ultra-sounds... just more expense for us!

My diabetic counseling kept getting pushed back, once because my glucometer wasn't here yet, and the other time because the nurse-practitioner was sick. By the time I finally went in, I had figured it out, thanks to Doug's help. He loves gadgets, so when the glucometer came he opened it up (I would have left it in the box until I got to the doctor's office for my "training"-- why start my torture any sooner then I needed to?) But Doug was excited to have something new to play with... so he poked himself at least 12 times figuring everything out, how deep you had to poke to get enough blood, where the least painful places were. He tried to talk me into trying it, by asking me "Aren't you curious? Don't you want to know if the diet is working? How can you not find out?" He finally wore me down. The first poke was terrible, and I didn't even get enough blood. Cute Porter patted my back while Doug poked me, I couldn't do it myself. I joked, "So are you going to come home four times a day and do this for me? The next day I finally got the courage to poke myself, and thankfully, it wasn't as bad as I feared. I was encouraged too, when I saw that my levels were low. I still don't like it, and Porter still pats my back sometimes, but I can do it. Sophia's even learning the lingo, "you test your blood sugar now mommy?" They both like to put the test strips in the glucometer and push the buttons.

I've been following the diet religiously. I haven't had one sweet thing since I was diagnosed. I do not want a 12 pound baby, so I'm not messing around here! My blood sugar levels are very, very low, so they told me today I can now start testing twice a day as opposed to four times a day. This is good, because it means at this point I don't need insulin to regulate my blood sugar. The ironic thing was that the doctor told me I wasn't gaining enough weight, in fact I've lost a pound since the beginning of the month. I don't know how this is possible, with the "diet" I have to balance every carb with protein, so I have been eating an awfully lot of cheese and peanut butter lately! He told me to eat more, but the thought of eating more of what I've already been eating just doesn't sound very appealing... cottage cheese, whole wheat bread, string cheese, salads, sandwiches ... after a while, ugh...

Despite my negative tone, this isn't a bad way to eat or live. It's very very healthy. There' s just nothing like being called to the table, and to be made accountable for every single thing I put in my mouth. I have to keep a food chart and write down what I eat, and how much I eat.

I feel like this experience has strengthened my testimony of priesthood blessings. I know the blessing Doug gave me the night I was diagnosed held great power. I don't know if it healed me, but it strengthened me. I never thought I could do my own finger pricks. He specifically blessed me that my body would work and that it wouldn't be hard for me to eat this way. The diet is working, my body is making the insulin it needs. I haven't craved anything sweet since I started. My birthday is coming up, and I thought I might have a special treat, but I can' t think of anything to splurge on. Nothing sounds good enough...

This experience is also teaching me some sympathy and empathy for people with chronic illnesses and conditions. This should go away after I have the baby, and I will be at a higher risk for developing diabetes in the future, but currently, there is an end in sight. People with chronic illnesses (or allergies like my SIL's wheat allergy) don't have that end in sight. But this is giving me a small glimpse into what it would be like, having to worry about something every day, not just once a day but several times a day. For me, it's every time I eat something, and then remembering to test two hours after every meal. Constant management.

I do have to add that up until this point I can honestly say that I have great pregnancies. I really don't get sick, I haven't felt too huge at the end, my labors have been relatively quick (albeit very painful), I really haven't had much to complain about... in fact, usually I love being pregnant. So in a way, I feel like it's my turn, it's only fair that I would be given something to challenge me in pregnancy.

Happy Birthday Pam!

My sister-in-law's birthday was last week. I think she and my brother make the most perfect pair. I met her before my brother did, and I remember thinking, she is too sweet to be real, no one can be so sweet and nice all of the time... But I can honestly say, and I've known her now for over eight years, that she is genuine, she is for real, and she is just as sweet and genuine as she comes across. She has set such an amazing example for me with her love and optimism.
I love you Pam and I feel blessed to be able to call you family!

The Rodeo Program



Porter's preschool hosted a Rodeo Day complete with program for the parents, and a luncheon for the kiddos. The kids all wore matching t-shirts and if you could see more you would see Porter's outfit was complete with his cowboy boots. The kids entertained us for half an hour with songs regaling the great state of Texas... TEXAS to the tune of Bingo, and The Stars are Bright, Deep in the Heart of Texas are the two that stand out in my mind... then they ended with the Chicken Dance. It was so much fun to watch! I just couldn't wipe the big smile off my face as I watched him singing and doing the hand actions to each of the songs. Sophia wasn't nearly as enthralled as I was, but luckily I brought enough snacks to keep her entertained. Doug was at work, so I video taped the performance and we watched it later that night.

I think things like this are just happy mom moments...

Saturday, March 24, 2007

I'd be delighted...



I'm not sure where Porter picked up this phrase, and he's been using it frequently... I always smile when ever he answers my request, with "I'd be delighted."
For example:
Me: "Porter will you please help your sister find her shoes?"

Porter: "I'd be delighted."

Love it!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

RODEO--Texas Style


Doug's Mom came to visit for the Rodeo. It was so fun to have her here!
Sophia calls the bed in our guest room, grandma's bed. Here's a
photo of the two spending some quality time doing puzzles! They
actually got to spend quite a bit of time together because Doug's mom
took the kids overnight so Doug and I could go on a little getaway!


Check out how many people the stadium can accommodate!

A self portrait of our family watching the rodeo!

We have made the rodeo a yearly tradition.
We learned the first year to bring ear protection
for everyone! We saw Martina McBride,my favorite!

A roping lesson! I enjoyed Tara's blog about rope...
It must be a little boy thing. Porter came away from the
Rodeo as the proud new owner of an authentic lasso
compliments of his grandma.



Petting bunnies





The Pirate Ship.
Poor little Sophia was not
even close to meeting the height requirement
for most of the rides, so her daddy took her on this one.


The Euro slide.
Porter and Doug left the concert a little
bit early so they could have a little
boys night out enjoying the carnival rides.
I wonder who is having more fun?




The petting zoo.
Being the animal person that I am,
I decided to observe from the side, but
I didn't realize I would not be able
to get close enough for
more quality photos...


All in all, we had another great Rodeo day!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

The ABC's of Me

* ACCENT: Idahoan

* BEST FRIEND: Doug and Jenni

* CHORE I DON'T CARE FOR: mopping

* DOG OR CAT: Neither... but if forced to choose, I would probably say dog

* ESSENTIAL ELECTRONICS: computer and cell phone.. but I find them a blessing and a curse

* FAVORITE SALAD DRESSING: honey mustard

* GOLD OR SILVER: silver

* HANDBAG OF CHOICE: depends on my mood, I love purses

* INDULGENCE: Dove dark chocolate

* JOB TITLE: Mommy

* KIDS: Porter 5, Sophia 2 and one on the way

* LATEST PERSONAL PURCHASE: sugar-free jam... pathetic, I know, but after a week of no sugar, it tasted pretty good!

* MOST FREQUENTLY CRAVED SNACK: ???

* NAIL POLISH OF CHOICE: I usually don't bother with it. I like how it looks when I use it, but I never keep up with it... my nails don't look so great with chipping paint

* OVERNIGHT HOSPITAL STAYS: child birth

* PHOBIAS: cockroaches, spiders, and currently finger pricks

* QUOTE: I have lots of favs, but none memorized

* REASON TO SMILE: My house is actually clean

* SIBLINGS: Steve 29, Adam 27, Paul 25, Vaughn 23, Mark 21

* TIME I RISE IN THE MORNING: If I'm going walking, 5:45 ... if not and because my kids have been sleeping in due to the time change, I've had a few 9:30 mornings...

* UNKNOWN FACT ABOUT ME: I life guarded at the community pool ... for one long summer when I was in high school, it was more like babysitting!

* VEGETABLE I REFUSE TO EAT: can't think of one

* WORST HABIT: procrastination

* X-RAYS: teeth

* YUMMY FOOD I MAKE: Oatmeal raisin cookies

* ZOO ANIMAL I MOST LIKE: The tigers, when they're swimming

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Bad News...

I didn't pass my glucose tolerance test... not only did I not pass it, I completely FAILED it. My levels were so high that they diagnosed me with Gestational Diabetes on the spot. I begged them to let me take the three hour test to confirm the results. The nurse practitioner I saw said I could take the test, but regardless of the results, they wouldn't change the diagnosis. She said once I have a reading like that, they are obligated to treat me for diabetes... I cried all of the way through the visit, and for the rest of the day.

What does this entail? Changing my diet, which I can do... no problem. Doing finger sticks four times a day, this I don't know how I'm going to do. I really have to psyche myself up for every blood draw, every poke that I have to endure. But to have to do them to myself, on a regular basis? If I am unable to control this through my diet I will have to give myself insulin shots. I go in on Friday for my educational counseling. That's when they will teach me how to use all of the supplies I have to pick up at the pharmacy and hopefully give me more guidance on the diet/nutrition guidelines.

I feel like I am a healthy person, I exercise still and try to eat healthy. The only person in my family with diabetes is my dad's grandma. I've never failed the one hour glucose test before. It's just so surprising. I guess it's another reminder that we never know what' s in store for us, and just because things go well one time, doesn't mean they will go well another.

For FHE last night we had a lesson on priesthood blessings, and Doug gave me a blessing, it gave us both a lot of comfort.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Grateful Sunday

This week I am grateful for:

* A fun visit from my mother-in-law-- and all of the babysitting that came along with it. I know that's not the reason she came, but it was so kind of her to watch my kids while I went to ALL of my many doctor's appointments. She also willingly agreed to watch my kids over night while Doug and I took a much needed getaway.

* The Rodeo and Porter's Rodeo program

* A clean house--with my mother-in-law's visit I had an incentive to get it really, really clean

* I survived my first official Sharing Time and Baptism

Happy Birthday Paul!





My brother Paul's birthday was last week. I have grown a lot closer to him over the last couple of years as we continue to have more shared experiences. I have so much respect and love for him and the choices he's made and the way he cares about people. He's so great about keeping in touch, and he loves my kids like crazy! Happy Birthday Paul!

Monday, March 05, 2007

Gus

My kids really, really, really want a dog... so does my husband for that matter... for now we've settled with seven fish and an algae sucker (our tank doesn't currently have algae, so we had to buy him algae to eat... I guess we were planning ahead)...

I don't know how long I'll be able to hold strong... I just know that as soon as I agree to adding a canine member to our family I will have a host of new responsibilities... I just don't think I'm ready to scoop poop and vacuum up dog hair... I have a hard enough time keeping up with what I already have to do... I might be able to be persuaded more easily to take in an outside dog, but Doug assures me that with the hot humid weather and the mosquitoes, forcing a dog to live outside would be cruel and unusual treatment... He also tells me that I won't have to do anything... I have a hard time believing that...

The only hard part about holding strong is that my kids LOVE dogs... they get so excited every time they see a dog at the park or on the street... One of the girls I visit teach has a dog, his name is Gus, he is our surrogate dog... She gets extra visits during the month just so we can have our fill of a dog for the day... Gus is a very likable dog, he's very patient, he will do all of his tricks for Porter. Gus will dance, talk, and shake. Porter loves to walk him and entice Gus to chase him... Sophia just squeals when she sees him and tries to get him to sit in her lap. She's fascinated with his teeth and big eyes. She could be accused of "over-loving" the dog... I like Gus too, not because I am a dog person, but because my kids like him so much, and he is so good with my kids...







Book Game Tag



From Tara B's and Leslie's Blog:

The Rules of the game:
1. Find the nearest book to you.
2. Name the book and author.
3. Turn to page 123.
4. Go to the fifth sentence on the page.
5. Copy out the next 3 sentences and post to your blog.

The book nearest me is The Ladies Auxiliary by Tova Mirvis. Jenni T* recommended it to me, of course! I get most of my books from her, the rest from Tara B* or my mom. I am really enjoying this one. It's about a Jewish convert trying to integrate herself into a new Jewish community after her husband is killed. There are so many similarities between this community and ours... it's kind of crazy. Tradition versus doctrine... gossip... judging... loving...friendship...

Batsheva said [the main character to the high school Jewish girls she's been teaching] "We can go on trips and do projects that would be impossible if we had more people. It's certainly better than sulking, don't you think?" The girls began talking about what might make the school year better: they had always wanted to put on a real play, not a stupid song-and-dance performance, but a drama with scripts and scenery and costumes.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Happy Weather!

We have been loving the sunshine!!! Notice too that with some bribing Sophia let me do her hair... granted, she takes it out as soon as we return home from our outing, but at least it's a start... that makes me happy too!

It makes us happy to play outside!

We went for a little bike ride to the lake in our neighborhood.



What's an outing without some digging in the dirt?



If you look close enough you can see Sophia's beautiful cheesy grin and pink shades!



Sweet Dreams



Bright and early yesterday morning Sophia crawled into my bed with a big smile on her face... Our conversation went like this...

Me: Sophia did you have good dreams?


Sophia, nodding : Yes


Me: What did you dream about?


Sophia, smiling bigger: Ice cream!


Primary Activity

Last Saturday I was in charge of my first ever quarterly Primary activity. I only have to be in charge of one per year, I volunteered for the first one so I wouldn't have to take my turn close to the baby's arrival or take a turn in the middle of my adjusting to life with three kids. It went so well, and I'm so glad to have it completed.

As a presidency we decided to hold the activity at the temple, and then I took care of the details. When we left K* it was raining... talk about leaving in faith! Sunshine welcomed us upon our arrival at the temple. We gathered in the ancillary room next to the distribution center. After a song and prayer we talked about the importance of temples as we showed the children pictures of the rooms inside of the temple. We then took a tour of the temple grounds, sharing stories about the temple grounds as we walked. We took pictures of each child in front of the temple, went around to the back where we had a quick snack, then met back inside the ancillary room to be greeted by the temple president. We sang some more songs, talked about faith and sent the kids home with a packet of seeds, some temple chocolates (there was some chocolate and molds in the Primary closet at church, I had never made molds before and agreed to make them for the kids... as I stayed up late to complete the simple but time consuming process I thought, "This is what is definitely considered to be unnecessary fluff!" I don't know that I would ever make a good enrichment person; I have very little creativity regarding cute decorations and crafts, and I think the simpler the better!) and pictures to color of the temple. I couldn't believe how quickly the time passed, I was pleased with the turn out we had, considering the weather, stake conference, and all the Saturday sports we were competing with.

It was interesting to note that the parents of some of the kids who came had very good reasons to not attend. Two of the families had grandparents in town, but they still brought their children. Another mom was due to have a baby within days, so she found a ride for her daughter. Compare that with the mom who told me that Saturday was her stay home and rest day... I compared it to a thought I've had lately about being late... when I am late to a meeting or to church, it usually doesn't hurt anyone but myself. It's no skin off the speaker's back if I show up 15 or 20 minutes late... The only person who is affected by it is me, I don't hear the whole presentation, nor do I have the same spirit as someone who was able to soak in the spirit from the beginning. I felt like the same principle applied to the children who attended the activity, based on the feedback, I really think they had a fabulous time... Porter keeps telling me he wants a temple recommend NOW! The activity wasn't affected by having kids stay home, but the kids who didn't come missed out on a special, spiritual experience.


At this point in the tour, we lost the Sunbeams, the CTR 5's and 6's to a fascinating snail!



A good group of kiddos!




Even though Sophia isn't technically in Primary, so LOVED running witht he big kids!



Angela and Sophia



Porter

26 weeks or so




My brother Paul asked me for a current pregnancy photo... so here it is! Paul got married when I was 7 months along with Sophia, and I find it kind of crazy that I feel way bigger now at 6 months, then I did then... I guess that can be attributed to age and baby number 3!